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So, back in July.. when I was very pregnant and it was like, a MILLION degrees outside.. I had the grand idea to try to squeeze in a “mini session” before I went on maternity leave.  It was nothing short of a disaster!  I’ll be the first to admit that!  First of all, did I mention how MISERABLY hot it was?  The kids were miserable, the parents were miserable, *I* was miserable!  Top that off with the city of Roanoke decided to SANDBLAST the water tower that morning that was literally directly behind us.  You couldn’t hear yourself think.   The little ones were scared of the noise and I’m sure frustrated that everyone was literally needing to yell to hear each other… U.G.H.!!!  I got what I could, but we didn’t want to push the kids further than they were being pushed already with the heat and the noise. I mean, WHO wants an entire session worth of pictures of their kids crying, pouting and having NOTHING to do with the session??   SO.. I told everyone that I would be more than happy to do retakes whenever I got back after my maternity leave and this is the first of those “take two”.  
 
THIS session was with a sweet family I met through my doula work a few years ago and we have just kept touch over the years.  They were great to work with and we got some really cute images I think they will love!  WAY better and more relaxed than the first time! 
 
Thanks for being so patient guys, I hope it was worth the wait!
 
This image was just a candid one of the boys being BOYS!  As a mom of 2 boys myself, I’m a sucker for these types of pictures.  This was one of my favorites from the session!
 

IMG_1671bw, originally uploaded by natashahance.

This weekend my family had the honor of working an event at our church (Cross Timbers Community Church).  This is the fourth FMR that my husband, Kirk has volunteered his time and experience for.  We started going to CT (cross timbers) about 2 years ago.  The moment we walked in we felt like we were at “home”.  You don’t have to be afraid to be you.  The people here are REAL.  The love runs deep and you can’t help but be moved to want to be a better person, to make a difference, to BE that person who makes someone else’s day better.  
 
When we found out about the FMR event , we knew this is a place where WE (ok, not so much ME, but a LOT Kirk) could give back.  Kirk owns/runs a mobile automotive repair company (Mobile Automotive Solutions), so this is a perfect way for him to give back.  The church pays for parts and dozens of men and women and even children spend an entire Saturday devoted to helping other people by fixing their “ride”.  We see a lot of single parents, people who have been laid off, working people who are just struggling.. people who need to catch a break, somewhere.  Okay, so how can it get better than that?  Not only were they able to fix over 100 cars, they put 4 people/families in ‘new’ cars.  Two of them were from the church and two more were donated that day. 
 
Toby, our pastor, has been talking to us about leaving memorials for our children to learn from.  Not the kind of memorial you think of.  Our kids need to SEE what it’s like to help other people.  They need to FEEL what it feels like to do something REALLY good for someone else and not get anything in return but just feeling good that YOU helped make someones day better.  Kirk and I have decided that we need to do more of that too.  So I hauled all 5 kids up to FMR yesterday and we stayed for 8 hours!  There were kids fetching tools, passing out water or food to people (people waiting and people working), “helping” however they could.  There were 13 year old boys changing oil and 7 year old boys holding flash lights with grease from head to toe.  It was nothing short of amazing to just sit back and see the big picture.  Strangers working together to help strangers.  Old-er men guiding young men and boys.  We were leaving memorials for our children that day. 
I have almost 300 images to go through.  I’ll share more soon.
 
~NH

IMG_0435bw, originally uploaded by natashahance.